Coach Scott Satterfield and his coaching staff will host four high school prospects for an official visit weekend starting today. The number of total official visitors from this week until signing day climbed to 18 this morning, per 247. The emphasis seems to be on defense as only five of those prospects are offensive players. Louisville has 10 or 11 spots left in this class and they look to be laser focused on filling specific needs. Here’s a look at the guys that are slated to visit this weekend.
Frank Ponce seems to be the guy that caught wind of McKibbin who is from California. He doesn’t have an offer yet, but the staff is looking to get five quarterbacks on the roster and that would likely mean they would take two high school quarterbacks. Blaze is a big kid who completely looks the part throwing the football. He has great mechanics and throws the ball with accuracy. He’s somewhat mobile but isn’t as much of an athlete as you’d like with Ponce and Satterfield both saying they look for guys who “can get out of trouble”.
I do wonder if his slower release would be a concern for the staff. He has a pretty big windup that could be an issue on play action passes out of the pistol. But, for the most part, McKibbin is a kid that you take a chance on if he shows up to campus and seems like a good fit. He doesn’t have an offer yet, so I would think that the staff will want to get him here to learn more about him. He didn’t play much until his senior year, so he might be a kid that was missed by everyone.
Cort Dennison made Allen Smith a priority when he got the job at Louisville. Smith was a UNC commit until the coaching change when he reopened his recruitment. Smith is one of my favorites out of the guys they’re targeting so far. He missed most of his senior season but he does everything that Bryan Brown’s defensive scheme asks out of the outside linebackers. He can run down plays on the edge and he can cover slot guys and tight ends. I’m really impressed on how he wraps up when he tackles and just the general force he brings when he tackles ball carriers.
As of now, Smith doesn’t have another official visit scheduled. Iowa State is the only other school that has offered him since he parted ways with UNC, so I think UofL is in great shape.
ShaDon Brown and Cort Dennison both recruited Tuasivi Nomura at their previous stops before coming to Louisville. It’s easy to make the comparison but it’s completely fair to say that Nomura plays a lot like Troy Polamalu. He’s got the hair flowing from the back of his helmet and he plays like he has no regard for his own body. Nomura is great at getting guys down in the open field. He plays fast at all times, which is an underrated skill. He’s also comfortable in coverage. I think he’ll end up at outside linebacker if he ends up in Louisville but he could also be a safety if they can keep his weight down.
USC, Iowa State, and Utah State are the other schols that Nomura has visited or is scheduled to visit. USC will be a hard team to beat out with him being from Corona, California. That’s an hour away from USC and they named him as his leader back in December.
Bryan Brown’s defense is built on speed so it wasn’t surprising when he visited and offered Kenney Solomon right off the bat. Solomon is a track kid out of South Carolina and he can flat out fly. Solomon excels in off coverage and breaks on the ball extremely well. Solomon is also a good return man and could be used in that role here. One of the things I really like about his game is that even though he’s a fast guy and has a smaller frame, he plays aggressively. He will come up and blow up a ball carrier.
Tennessee hopped in and offered Solomon right before UofL. They’ve had him in for an unofficial visit but he only has an official visit scheduled with Louisville. Bryan Brown has been targeting linebackers and defensive backs all week long but I think it says something that Solomon was one of the first guys he met with. The Cards look to be in good shape to land him.